Here’s the synopsis of today’s actions. Do as much as you can. (More details below.)
- First thing – Call your legislators on horrible judge pick Thomas Farr
- Go to the Fairgrounds to protest gun shows
- Sign a petition against gun shows
- Email the Country Fair Board
- Go to the Oxnard City Council meeting tonight. Police Chief Whitney is presenting a temporary moratorium on new firearms and ammunition retailers.
#1 – Morning Coffee Action – Make this call – “NO” on Thomas Farr for US District Judge for the Eastern District of North Carolina.
This man, who the Rev. William J. Barber described in TIME magazine as “moral poison“, passed through the GOP-dominated Senate Judiciary Committee and is heading to the floor. He has misspent almost 40 years of his life aiding and abetting the fight to block full citizenship for all Americans.
“We will have to repent in this generation,” Dr. Martin Luther King wrote from an Alabama jail, “not merely for the vitriolic words and actions of the bad people… but for the appalling silence of the good people.” (Click here while your coffeemaker is working, for the list of six Republican supporters who decided to “honor” MLK Day on Twitter while voting to support Farr’s nomination to a lifetime seat on the federal bench.)
Now drink your coffee and make this call.
Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code]. I would like the Senator [___] to oppose the seating of Thomas Farr to a seat on any U.S. District Court.
Senator Feinstein: DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harris: DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Other Rep./Senator Contacts: www.phoneyourrep.com
Thomas Alvin Farr has focused his legal career on disenfranchising voters of color and attacking workers’ rights. North Carolina Republicans call him when they need to dilute African-American votes and implement laws aimed at Black voters with “almost surgical precision.” For the last three decades, he represented the campaign of the ultraconservative Senator Jesse Helms at a time when the campaign was accused of intimidating black voters. (Don’t remember this? – read the horrifying things they did here.) Indeed, the courts have rebuked Farr’s most recent voting rights cases. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., described Farr as “probably the worst of the litter” when it comes to Trump’s judicial nominees. “Could this administration have picked an individual who is more hostile to the rights of minorities than this man? It is hard to imagine,” Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said in the same committee hearing.
He routinely represents corporations that discriminate against both customers and workers. He defended Avis when outlets in North and South Carolina denied African Americans the right to rent cars on the same terms as white customers (Really?!? Avis, try harder!). He supported a North Carolina bill that prevented women who were discriminated against, or who were victims of workplace sexual harassment, from filing a lawsuit in state court, calling it a “better policy for the state.” He has also fought against workers’ efforts to unionize and was a staff attorney at the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, which has deep ties to the Koch brothers and was described by The Center for Media and Democracy as “a national leader in the effort to destroy public and private sector unions.”
Farr’s nomination is especially insulting because it’s for the nation’s longest judicial vacancy, the seat on the Eastern NC District Court that was denied to two highly-qualified African-American female nominees who Sen. Burr blocked from receiving a hearing. In fact, of the 48 people he’s nominated to appellate courts, none are black or Latino. Thirty-nine of them are men. Eighty percent come from the far-right Federalist Society, though only 4 percent of the nation’s lawyers are members. Thomas Farr has been a member since 1985.
#2 – After-Breakfast Action – Head to the Ventura County Fairgrounds and ask them to stop sponsoring gunshows.
Facebook link here. Show up, speak or be a supporter today, Tuesday 11/27rd at 8:30 a.m. at the Ventura County Fairgrounds Board of Directors meeting! It will be held on the fairgrounds at the Derby Club building, 10 West Harbor Blvd. Ventura, CA 93001. Parking is free.
Crossroads of the West is run by a gun law violator. Bob Templeton, board president of the family-owned B&L Productions, was convicted of a felony unlawful firearm sale in 1980 and his son, former board vice president, was convicted on weapons and drug charges in 2003. Mr. Templeton has stated that two other children with clean records currently sign all contracts and oversee the shows.
This show has a direct connection to the Las Vegas Massacre. Stephen Paddock purchased bullets from a vendor he met at the Crossroads of The West Gun Shows. The vendor, Douglas Haig, was approved for the Crossroads gun shows in Las Vegas and Phoenix even though his website, called “Specialized Military Ammunition”, advertised high explosive armor-piercing (AP) incendiary ammunition, much, but not all of which is illegal under federal law. Paddock purchased several ten-round packages of .308 caliber incendiary ammunition at the show itself and arranged to meet afterwards off-site to buy 720 rounds of tracer ammunition. Bullets traced back to Haig were found in Paddock’s hotel room, and were proven by the FBI to be metallurgically classified as armor piercing bullets as well as incendiary as advertised. Haig has subsequently been arrested and charged with the manufacture of this type of ammunition without a license.
This show is willing to violate the intent of CA laws: In 2013, San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera filed suit against three gun accessories companies and Crossroads of the West for selling disassembled high‐capacity magazines in violation of California’s law that prohibits the sale, manufacture, or import of gun ammunition feeding devices that accept more than 10 rounds. These device were labeled as gun magazine “repair kits” in a barely‐disguised attempt to skirt a 14‐year‐old California gun safety law, the disassembled equipment is intended for easy reassembly by purchasers into complete, fully functional high‐capacity magazines that dramatically enhance the lethality of otherwise lawful firearms.
#3 – Waiting-for-the-meeting-to-start Action – Sign this petition
Take an action TODAY to end the proliferation of guns via the gun shows at the Ventura County Fairgrounds and our state profiting off of gun and ammunition sales. Help end the CROSSROADS of THE WEST (COTW) contract with Ventura County . (See “Background” below regarding some highly problematic issues with this promoter.)
#4 – Waiting-for-the-meeting-to-start Action – Email the County Fair Board
Email: Barbara Quaid at: email@example.com
Write a letter or postcard: Ventura County Fair Board, 10 West Harbor Blvd., Ventura, CA 93001, Attn. Barbara Quaid, CEO
Sample script (mix it up): Dear Ventura County, Fair Board Directors: I live in Ventura County and I ask that you not re-new the contract with Crossroads of the West Gun Shows, and that you end ALL gun shows at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, a state-owned property. As a taxpayer and resident, I believe that no state agency should promote or profit from the proliferation of firearms and ammunition. The advertisement of firearms when viewed by children have a negative impact on their health and well-being. I believe it is your responsibility to find other financial means to support our 31st Agricultural District.
#5 – Evening action – Support a firearms retailer moratorium at the Oxnard City Council meeting, 6:00 pm.
Oxnard’s Police Chief Scott Whitney is presenting his proposal “Urgency Ordinance-Moratorium on Firearms Retailers”. Go and support him.
Full agenda here.
K.PUBLIC HEARINGS – Police Department
RECOMMENDATION: That City Council adopt an interim land use ordinance pursuant to Government Code Section 65858 imposing a temporary moratorium for 45 days, subject to extensions, on the establishment of new retail uses selling firearms and ammunition to allow the City to study this land use and make recommendations to the Planning Commission and City Council.
Legislative Body: CC Contact: Scott Whitney Phone: (805) 385-7624